How do you get discovered? Find out the dos and don’ts when it comes to getting picked up by an A&R representative. This panel will look at the processes of label A&R’s and agency A&R’s and what they look for when scouting talent.
Alex Peppiatt - A&R (Parlophone)
Alex started working in music in 2016 with Ministry of Sound, working on Playlists and Compilations. After that he A&R consulted for Promised Land Publishing and began woking as an A&R for Parlophone Records at the beginning of 2018.
Dylan First - Booking Agent (One House Artists)
Dylan began his career in music whilst studying at The University of Manchester where he held a few residencies across the city.
After doing a law degree in London following this he went to work in the mailroom at WME in London, delivering post and running around the city doing errands.
He then became an agent's assistant at WME and worked directly on artists such as Bjork, Massive Attack, Calvin Harris, Richie Hawtin, Adam Beyer, Fatboy Slim and many more.
Having gained invaluable experience at one of the biggest agencies in the world he then joined the newly formed One House Artists agency in October 2017 where he is now the booking agent for artists such as Kevin Saunderson, Soul Clap, Jasper James, Delano Smith and rising stars Brame & Hamo and DINA.
Caitlin Connor - A&R Assistant (Polydor)
After graduating in 2014 from Edinburgh Napier University with a BA (Hons) in Popular Music, Caitlin started an internship at Soma Records in Glasgow. In 2016, she moved to London to start an internship at Decca Records as a Commercial Intern for 15 months. After finishing the internship, Caitlin was offered a role at Polydor as an A&R Assistant, assisting on artist projects such as The 1975, Friendly Fires, Roger Daltrey & Lana Del Rey.
John Thompson - CEO (Distiller Music)
After a thirteen-year career in the British Army John decided it was time to look for a new challenge. Having had a passion for music all of his life he set his sights on the music career.
A chance meeting that had him head to London for short notice interview kick started John’s career in the music industry, starting out as Tour Security for Radiohead no less! Having made a positive impact with both the band and the crew John them went on to provide Tour Security for the likes of Stereophonics, the Kaiser Chiefs, Arctic Monkeys, Bloc Party, Beady Eye and Oasis; touring the world extensively for several years nonstop.
Having a passion for organisation John quickly progressed to tour managing bands and artists whilst they embarked on world-wide tours. During this period, John completed an Honours Degree in Event Management through Leeds Metropolitan University, gaining a 2:1 classification.
In 2014 John began working at Distiller Records as their Head of Touring and Security, creating a sub-division of the label called ‘Distiller Live’ that services all of the live and touring requirements of the labels roster. Again, his organisational and management skills saw John promoted to Operations Director in 2015 and then on to his current position as CEO in January 2018.
John is still actively tour managing and goes out on the road with The Ramona Flowers having successfully brokered license deals for the band in Japan with Warner and in Italy with universal. After a recent trip to China John is currently working on breaking the band in that market.
James Harwood - Director (The Label)
James’s career began with an events company that he grew into a brand culminating in hosting nights at Brixton Academy and various stages at UK festivals. Prior to Black Butter James had worked at Colombia Records, Warner brother’s and Deconstruction records.
James was a consultant A and R manager at Black Butter where he has worked across various artist projects including Zara Larsson, J Hus and AJR. As well as overseeing numerous singles and more specialist releases. James specialises in international licences and campaigns.
James has also managed various artists and producer/writers including Alex Adair (Virgin/EMI) Debut single Top 10 in the UK, Tom Stafford (Kobalt) and Jaded (RCA/Black Butter).